2019-08-10 14:37:21 UTC
NEW YORK — Jeffrey Epstein, the disgraced financier who was being held
in a Manhattan jail awaiting federal sex trafficking charges, died early
Saturday from an apparent suicide.
Although details surrounding his death were still emerging, ABC News,
which broke the story, and The New York Times quoted unidentified
officials as saying that Epstein was found dead in his Manhattan cell.
The Times, which said Epstein hanged himself, quoted officials as saying
his body was found at 7:30 a.m. Saturday.
CNN and NBC News reported that Epstein was found in cardiac arrest early
Saturday and taken to a hospital where he died.
Officials at the Metropolitan Correctional Center did not immediately
respond to inquiries seeking comment on the reported suicide.
The New York Fire Department, without naming the individual, confirmed
that it received a call at 6:39 a.m. about a person in cardiac arrest at
the Metropolitan Correctional Center. The individual was transported to
a New York hospital shortly.
It was not immediately clear how Epstein could have killed himself.
Three weeks ago he was placed on suicide watch after being found
unconscious in his cell in Metropolitan Correctional Center. He had
suffered injuries to his neck in what appeared to be a suicide attempt
or jailhouse assault.
Epstein, 66, an investment banker banker who counted among his powerful
connections Bill Clinton, Donald Trump and Prince Andrew, had pleaded
not guilty to charges of drug trafficking and allegedly sexually abusing
dozens of underage girls in New York and Florida.
He was convicted in 2008 on Florida charges of soliciting and procuring
a person under 18 for prostitution.
He avoided what could have been a lengthy prison sentence under a plea
deal with then-U.S. Attorney Alex Acosta. The deal drew intense scrutiny
and led Acosta to resign as President Donald Trump's labor secretary.